The bottom line is clear: Our vital interests in Afghanistan are limited and military victory is not the key to achieving them. On the contrary, waging a lengthy counterinsurgency war in Afghanistan may well do more to aid Taliban recruiting than to dismantle the group, help spread conflict further into Pakistan, unify radical groups that might otherwise be quarreling amongst themselves, threaten the long-term health of the U.S. economy, and prevent the U.S. government from turning its full attention to other pressing problems. -- Afghanistan Study Group

Friday, May 15, 2009

War News for Friday, May 15, 2009

MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a Coalition forces Soldier during combat operations in Duluiyah, Iraq on Wednesday, May 13th. Four additional soldiers were wounded in the attack.

CNN: Three coalition soldiers die in Afghanistan

Bloody summer for British troops in Taliban country:

5 dead in Kurdish rebel clash in Turkey:

Reported Security incidents:

#1: An advisor to the chief of the Sunni Endowment Office escaped an assassination attempt that left his driver wounded on Thursday, a media spokesman for the office said. “Sheikh Mahmoud al-Salhi escaped an attempt on his life by unidentified gunmen who opened their fire at the vehicle carrying him to al-Adl neighborhood, western Baghdad,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The incident left his driver wounded.

#2: Gunmen shot and killed a civilian in his shop in the Jihad district of southwest Baghdad, police said.

#3: Militants targeting a U.S. patrol using hand grenades wounded two civilians in the new Baghdad district of eastern Baghdad, police said.

Diyala Prv:
#1: Gunmen killed two brothers belonging to a government -backed militia and their mother at their home overnight in northern Baquba, 65 km (40 miles) northeast of Baghdad, police said

#1: A U.S. Hummer vehicle was on fire when an improvised explosive device (IED) went off near a U.S. patrol in northern Babel province on Thursday, a local police source said. “A roadside IED planted on a highway near al-Latifiya area, (60 km) north of al-Hilla city, went off as a U.S. patrol was driving by,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The U.S. troops imposed a security cordon on the scene,” the source said, adding policemen in the site said the vehicle burned down but could not have information on casualties.

Tuz Khurmato:
#1: Gunmen shot and killed a Turkman shopkeeper in his shop in Tuz Khurmato, 170 km (105 miles) north of Baghdad on Thursday, police said.

#1: Kurdish security forces managed to defuse a car bomb and an improvised explosive device in Sinjar, without casualties, the major of the district said Friday.“The forces managed on Friday morning (May 15) to defuse a car bomb on the main road in Sinjar, west of Mosul,” Dakheel Qassem Hassoun told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#1: Unknown gunmen on Thursday kidnapped a Christian teacher from inside his school at al-Rashad district, southwest of Kirkuk city, said a source from the joint coordination center. “The incident took place at al-Rashad district, 35 km southwest of Kirkuk,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The abducted teacher, Moneer Kadhom Gorgess, is Christian and has recently received his new job to teach in the school,” he said.

#1: A contractor was shot down by gunmen in western Mosul city on Thursday, police said. “Unidentified gunmen opened fire at a contractor in the area of al-Shifaa, western Mosul, killing him instantly before they managed to escape to an unknown place,” a security source in Ninewa police told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

#2: A policeman was killed Friday in a clash with a gunman at a police checkpoint in western Mosul, according to a security source. “A policeman was killed by a gunman in Dawrat al-Yarmouk region in western Mosul on Friday (May 15),” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency. “The gunman was seriously injured and was arrested by police forces during a hunt down operation,” he added.

A militant shot dead an Iraqi policeman at a checkpoint while the policeman was searching his car in western Mosul, police said. After a chase, police returned fire and wounded and arrested the man, they said.

#3: Police said they found the decapitated body of a man in Telkeif town, on the northern outskirts of Mosul city, about 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad on Thursday.

#4: A roadside bomb narrowly missed killing a journalist from a local TV station when it exploded in front of her house in Mosul while she was inside, police said.

Afghanistan: "The Forgotten War"
#1: Insurgents attacked a prison in eastern Afghanistan before dawn Friday, sparking a gunbattle with guards during which one prisoner was killed and another escaped, police said. The militants did not manage to break into the prison in eastern Laghman province on Friday, but a group of more than a dozen prisoners charged an interior gate, breaking through to the outer wall, said provincial Police Chief Gen. Abdul Karim. One prisoner managed to get away by jumping over the wall, while police shot another one dead as he attempted to flee, Karim said. Both of the men had been imprisoned for criminal offenses and were not known to have Taliban connections, he said. Police captured one of the attackers and wounded some others, he said. No police or guards were injured.

#2: Pakistani forces killed 55 Taliban in the northwestern valley of Swat on Friday, the army said, and lifted a curfew to allow thousands of civilians to flee before troops assail the Taliban-held main town. But an e-mailed army statement also said militants had mounted a counterattack, and that three soldiers were killed and 11 wounded in various clashes over the previous 24 hours.

#3: Afghan and Western forces killed insurgents numbering in the "low single figures" during operations in the Nawa district of southern Helmand province overnight, a NATO spokesman said. Provincial police chief Asadullah Sherzad said Afghan troops backed by foreign air power had killed 22 militants, but that figure could not be confirmed. Intelligence had indicated insurgents were massing in a compound in the district to attack the neighbouring provincial capital, Lashkar Gah, Sherzad said.